Current Issue : May - June 2022
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Articles May-Jun 2022

PALM SUMMIT Conference & SeminarNew!

Knowledge Quotient at PALM AV-ICN expo 2022
PALM SUMMIT Conference & Seminar

Manufacturers and distributors spend three fruitful days at PALM, exhibiting and showcasing their latest products, but beyond the enticing exhibition stands, are fringe events like the PALM Conference & Seminar Programme that are arguably the most valuable feature of the three days, wherein delegates ... read more

Articles May-Jun 2022

TOP 50 PRODUCTS & TECHNOLOGYNew!

Global Pro Sound & Light Technology
TOP 50 PRODUCTS & TECHNOLOGY

PALM has selected the Top 50 Pro Audio and Lighting Products & Technology, trending in the National and / or international markets. The demand for advanced technology has made the industry competitive with global brands unveiling the latest product technology and new versions of equipment with upgraded ... read more

Articles May-Jun 2022

OUTSTANDING CONTRIBUTION TO THE PRO AUDIO INDUSTRYNew!

Glimpse of One of The Plants at Noida, U.P.

This year PALM + AV-ICN is honouring the AHUJA FAMILY for their Leadership of over Eight Decades in the Pro Audio Industry with the Lifetime Contribution to The Pro Audio Industry Award at the PALM Sound & Light awards. This award recognizes over Eighty Years of innovation, quality & reliability of brand AHUJA in meeting the demands of Pro Audio products in India. This award acknowledges their commitment to... read more

Articles May-Jun 2022

AV ARCHITECT OF THE YEARNew!

Awarded for highest standards in adopting best innovation and vision in AV Architecture This award has been instituted for an AV Architect chosen by AV-ICN platform to be recognized for the quality of his body of work, incorporating the best innovation and vision in AV architecture. In this feature, we highlight one of the most prestigious projects accomplished by Narendra Naidu - The Statue of Unity... read more

Articles Mar-Apr 2022

PALM AV-ICN 2022 SHOW PREVIEWNew!

PALM Expo was launched in 2001, in response to the top music recording engineers in Bombay desiring a dedicated pro audio expo. Bombay was the music recording capital and Bollywood Bombay boasted of the big studios and big sound rental companies and the beginning of the big stage... read more

Articles Mar-Apr 2022

Milind Raorane Sets the Tone at ToyRoom MumbaiNew!

ToyRoom outfitted its second outpost in Mumbai with Electro-Acoustic Design Consultant Milind Raorane to deploy a comprehensive Sound and Audio design that would enhance the unapparelled ambience of the nightclub. PALM +AV-ICN Reports.
Nex Protection Technology

Located in Kalina, Mumbai, Toy-Room Mumbai is established on the premises of the vibrant and stylish Grand Hyatt, one of Mumbai's sophisticated leisure and business... read more

Articles Mar-Apr 2022

Post Pandemic Video Conferencing RiseNew!

Abdul Waheed is the Managing Director at EYTE Technologies. A CTS holder from Avixa, Member of the Certificate Committee of AVIXA, has been in the AV industry for more than two decades, delivering many successful projects across various segments. Abdul gives his overview of the video-conferencing industry and the latest market trends.

ommunication, the human connection is the key to personal and professional success. It is very important to have effective communication... read more

Articles Mar-Apr 2022

The CHORDFATHER Experience New!

Neumann's first Studio Monitor Experience Center in Mumbai
Nex Protection Technology

Recently Neumann in collaboration with well-known music composer, producer, sound engineer, and live engineer, Sunny M.R.'s Chordfather Productions announced the launch of its exclusive Studio Monitor Experience Center for audio professionals... read more

Articles Jan-Feb 2022

Understanding the Dynamic Evolution of Projection Technology with NEC New!

Humans have always wanted to bring their imagination to life. Introducing 2K / 4K projectors that deliver superior colors’ and high resolution has made that possible.
Nex Protection Technology

The high detail, true color rendition and cinema-like quality video of projectors are being leveraged by Artists, museums, schools and businesses alike to educate, attract and engage customers or to uplift and inspire people in new and innovative ways...... read more

Articles Jan-Feb 2022

Integrated System Design Crafts a Savvy Aural Experience Hot!

HARMAN Professional Solutions & ISD install a comprehensive Aural setup at Pass Code Hospitality newly opened restaurants.
Integrated System Design

When Pass Code Hospitality opened three new bustling restaurants in Lower Parel, Mumbai, they reached out to HARMAN Professional Solutions and Integrated System Design to deploy a comprehensive Aural setup that enhanced each restaurant's theme well....... read more

Articles Jan-Feb 2022

Star Dimensions India accomplishes STATE-OF-THE-ART- LIGHTING ARCHITECTURE for the "BANDRA WONDERLAND" project in Mumbai New!

Ashish Mehta & Becket Tundatil Creatively Execute Seamless Architectural Lighting Design at the Iconic Bandra-Worli Sea Link.
Bandra-Worli Sea

Between 24th December 2021 and 2nd January 2022, the project came alive as the sun set on the city - with the entire 1.5 km of the Bandra Reclamation promenade being engulfed in specially themed displays that emphasized the four different seasons of the year, boasting different eye-catching..... read more

Articles Jan-Feb 2022

Understanding the Pro-Audio Market with Sennheiser New!

Sennheiser is a leading manufacturer of headphones, loudspeakers, microphones, and wireless transmission systems and has been creating unique sound experiences for customers. PALM+ AV-ICN got in touch with Vipin Pungalia, Director, Sales - Pro Audio & Country Manager, Sennheiser - India, to learn more about the company's plans for the Indian market.
Vipin Pungalia Pro Audio Country Manager Sennheiser

The live music industry had seen a boom before the third wave of COVID stuck. What are the current industry sentiments, and do you think that the industry is poised to see a boom again? India has always been a music-loving country, for global as well as local artists..... read more


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The Rise of Indie Labels

by Abhimanyu Malhotra, The Sonic Arts Co.





My previous column was an insight into how the music industry adapted to the fallout of the pandemic and how we navigated such new and turbulent waters. And now, as we start assimilating to this ‘new normal’, we are seeing certain trends across our industry that have developed over the past few months. The sheer amount of talent in this country, across genres or skill level, has been hard at work while stuck at home, and this is reflected through the amount of content that has been created and released over the past few months. It is without a doubt that India is a goldmine of musical talents just waiting to be discovered, but the flip side of that coin is that a massive percentage of this talent pool still goes undiscovered and unappreciated. There is still tremendous opportunity in breaking new artists and giving them the necessary resources, knowledge and guidance in order to establish themselves and build a following, and the pattern we have seen over the past few months is the emergence of music labels that aim to fill this very gap in the industry and take advantage of this ripe opportunity.

Let us first look at the role of a music label and how it has transformed over the years. Traditionally, a label was responsible for producing the artist’s sound, marketing and distributing a physical product (CD or cassette tape) and setting up tours. They were seen as the backbone for an artist’s career, but signing with a label did come with it’s own set of drawbacks. Labels had a tendency to push their commercial agendas over artistic vision, take advantage of royalty monetisation, and there are countless artists that were locked into contracts that were detrimental to their music and careers. Thanks to technology and the advent of social media, the roles that label was supposed to fulfil have now become decentralised. The artist gained power and could engage with all these roles in a direct manner, executing their vision as they pleased. Nowadays, digital distributors offer 100% royalties to artists and platforms such as Instagram and Google Ads are massively utilised for music marketing by individuals. Access to producing music has become cheaper, no longer requiring million dollar studios, and has become prosumer facing (where you don’t require technically advanced professional gear in order to create a piece of music and multi-million dollar music hits are being produced and written on iPhones and Apps such as GarageBand). This decentralisation has transformed the traditional roles played by a label, but a key component left behind is the element of moulding an artist, and the artist’s sound. The ability to take raw talent and mould it into something world-class is not as easy to replicate, and this producer role has been a missing key element all along. It is a vital role that determines the overall quality of the music landscape, and pushes the bar higher not just for individual artists, but for audiences as well.

Over the last few months a number of Indian record companies, both mainstream and independent, have launched with the intention of being modern record labels that give artists creative freedom and investing in platforms that promote the sounds of the unheard masses. AT Azaad (Amit Trivedi), Oriyon Music (Arijit Singh), Merchant Records (Salim-Sulaiman), VB Music (Vishal Bharadwaj) are examples of labels launched by prominent and accomplished individuals over the last few months. VishaI Dadlani and Emiway also have their own imprints soon to launch. The very scope of the styles and genres that will be covered here is immense, and for these industry tastemakers are taking upon a big responsibility on their shoulders by launching such initiatives, which is to be the torchbearers for the next generation of musical talent. They have taken upon the responsibility to find, nurture and provide a platform, which is the need of the hour. What also sets such initiatives apart, is that the label is no longer in the hands of corporates but artists themselves, who know the struggles and who know the sheer amount of work that goes into making a mark in the industry. The creative and corporate angles are now balanced by individuals who are musicians themselves, and who have their own audiences and fan following. This drastically changes the dynamic that previously deterred musicians from signing over their careers to music labels. Creativity and vision is now a core value, rather than just a marketing strategy. Artists now own their own masters (which is a huge step forward) and are also given a lot more flexible contract options, such as signing over individual tracks as opposed to deals which used to lock them down for years at a time and leech on every possible income stream.

This decentralisation has transformed the traditional roles played by a label, but a key component left behind is the element of moulding an artist, and the artist’s sound. The ability to take raw talent and mould it into something world-class is not as easy to replicate, and this producer role has been a missing key element all along.

The last few months has even seen artist talent agencies such as Krunk and Third Culture launching their label initiatives, focusing on developing niche sounds, yet with the same intention of ushering in and moulding the next generation of musicians. Music studio Salt Haus in Chennai, again run by artists and musicians has also launched their label imprint, with the idea of filling the role of the producer in the industry. No matter the genre or style of music, the pattern we are observing suggests that tastemakers have identified this gap of who will curate the next generation of sounds and are now actively building an answer to the question.

Looking at label releases from a monetisation stand point, they are definitely not replacing the income streams provided by live events (which unfortunately are going to continue being on hiatus for quite awhile), as the sheer number of streams required across video and audio platforms is in the millions (YouTube approximately pays out .01 INR per stream, while Apple, Spotify and others range from .04-0.6 INR per stream for audiences in the Indian sub continent. These payout rates differ from country to country and are determined by a number of factors, and the range between rates is ~0.7-0.10 INR). And that’s why it makes sense for music companies and artists to launch labels as a secondary arm to what their primarily role is. Whether it is a booking agency like Krunk or music studio like Salt Haus, the label aspect is being shaped to feed the primary objective of that respective company. It becomes a marketing arm, a digital extension of the brand that can keep their audiences constantly engaged and grow the fanbase.

This genre-wide emergence certainly gives a lot of promise and hope to all those musicians just waiting to be discovered. What’s most exciting is, that it is not a group of corporate individuals behind the curtain, but artists and musicians who have decades of experience. As a musician myself, I have worked in all sorts of environments and the journey is a lot more fulfilling and motivating when mentored or guided by an experienced artist. Seeing and hearing the material that will be released by such labels is definitely going to be interesting and something to keep an eye out for. Despite the impact of the lockdown on our industry, it is certainly re-emerging and maturing with new and promising avatars.

Current Issue : May - June 2022
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